Notice: We will be removing the ability to manually change your rank

Well the effect of provisional games is a little exaggerated, I think. It’s not too hard to clear provisional status and end up with a rank much higher than you deserve. For example, a 1k selects 6d and wins 4 or 5 games against 2-4k players. The result is a bona fide 6d, who is actually still 1k in strength. But when 1-3d players start showing them who’s boss, you may end up with the rating points you’re looking for to keep the system stable. Just my 2c.


Yeah, I, But of those overwhelming amounts, how many are SDK or Dan level?

Without being able to change your rank (a very good thing I think), arent we making rules to exceptions by introducing a cap. If we have an active community, it should be easy to pick out those that have a wrong rank. and give them like a 1000 provisional games. How many give a wrong rank?

OH well that last question came out wrong… just wondering how big a problem it really is?

OK, here’s a thought. How about a group/ladder/room/?? set up especially for the purpose of getting a good initial rank? If a new user uses the ranking room, he is provisional for 5 games. If he skips the ranking room, he is provisional for N games (a big number).

Solving life-and-death problems would be perfect.

Leave the ability to change but restrict it to the most difficult puzzle they solved. Maybe they have to solve 10 in a row at a particular level to get the right to choose that rank. 10 in a row for life-and-death is not outside of the ordinary. Five in a row would be charitable.

If they solve all the problems, the ranks change locks so they cannot sandbag. And, of course, is provisional to create the extra layer of integrity without requiring human resources.

Make changing ranks a serious issue and people will treat it seriously.

They can always grind to the top. Nobody is stopping that.

It will require a well developed life-and-death problems section. People will have to be tasked with double checking that user submitted problems are valid in their solution, categories and rank.

I’ve discussed this here: Suggestion: “Interactive” Go

I think a social solution is best. As long as the regular members promote a culture where accurate ratings/ranks are good things will work out. If new some members set very inaccurate ranks, the regular members can just point this out to an admin for correction. Those that go unreported could easily be found by running some scripts looking for long winning or losing streaks of new players.

The problems with ratings found on Tygem are because the members and/or admins do not bother policing things.

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Seems to me thats a bit to much to ask of a community and moderators. it should not be a paranoid survalience-culture where ppl get reported left and right and someone has to verify the claims. it should be as automatic as possible. Thing of how much abuse this system would have to leave with… everytome from just pure sabotage and trolling to just pissed of players who complain about losing to someone they thing is to strong adn that just had a really good game, or they a bad one…

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I think a social solution is best


Many of our stronger players, (particularly @Pempu ) have already reported fake dans on more than one occasion. I don’t think we need to jump through additional hoops on sign-up, we just need to recognise and support the great job that our members already do.

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Of course not. But if you want to change your rank, you should have to jump through a couple of hoops. Namely, life-and-death and provision.

You think you are 5K? No problem. Solve these puzzles and you’ll get provisional status.

“see something, say something” Homeland Security garbage is the last thing I ever want to see on a go server.

Until we have an automatic system, the manual rank option needs to be shelved and we will need to depend on honorable members of the community to do a bit of policing.

But the day of policing should have a sunset.

I’d rather see members helping out on thorny game situations like triple ko and life-and-death or dealing with clowns at the stone removal phase than screaming about who deserves what rank.

“You [won/loss] seven games in a row. You are full of terrorism and will be dealt with by the proper authorities.”

Is that really what you want?

Well for me having to jump through hoops (solving tsumego) feels really unwelcome. "So you are a 8k, proof it! Solve these"
What i like about OGS is the open and friendly nature of the site. This proposal would diminish that tremendously. I would rather start with the trust that people give their actual rank,I dont think its worth losing the open and friendly nature of OGS to a small group of peoplel who misbehave.

Having to solve problems to proof something feels to me like policing and a very strict server. where crossing lines like forgetting to greed someone at the beginning of a game is heavily punished.

Therefore i would really like to know how often this occors per number of new people… once a week or 10 times a day


What if your rank remains provisional until you win a game against someone who is one rank weaker than your purported rank? If you say you are 6 dan, your rank will be provisional until you win a game against a 5+ dan player.

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Well, if it is just one game one could make that up with another fake 5 Dan I fear :confounded:

The 5 dan player needs to be non-provisional. You can’t just generate a sock-puppet account, manually set the rank to 5 dan, and then beat it.


You are correct. We would lose too much with my proposal.

Why does OGS need this? Are deliberate fake ranks a widespread problem?

If not, I’ll throw my voice in with @KillerDucky and others. The community should take care of its black sheep. @anoek stated that you can already set and lock a player’s rank if they cause trouble. This is really all that is needed!

@sousys, the use of automation to babysit everyone is a staple feature of surveillance culture. To follow-up individual reports with investigation and appropriate action by trusted community moderators is the exact opposite.

I have changed my rank from 4k to 2k in the past to recover from long losing streaks. I don’t feel bad about it because the purpose of the rank system is matching players of equal strength. If the feature is disabled, I will have no choice but to fight my way back up. My games will contribute to the rank inflation and be less meaningful as a learning experience for me.

It’s too bad that I notice this thread only now and that even four days ago, the decision to make this change was apparently already set in stone. Still, let me post my opinion here to remind myself and anyone else who reads this three months from now to re-open the discussion and look back at the net effect, positive or negative, of this measure :smile:

If you fought your way down and fought your way up, wouldn’t that have zero effect on rank inflation/deflation?

And if someone moved his rank up a couple of notches every couple of months (to keep it at a fixed level), wouldn’t that HAVE an effect on rank inflation/deflation?


Lots of discussion here from the community, which is nice to see.

Mods still have the ability to change ranks, @animiral so if you’ve been away from the server for a few weeks, and have ranked up elsewhere, or if you’ve had a weird losing streak where you’ve lost a few stones in rank, then a mod will be happy to fix things up for you. I’ve done this for players who have lost teaching games because of timeout, for example.

We do get a lot of abuse of this feature, from out-and-out trolls who decide that being a 6 dan would be fun for the day, to regulars who decide that they want to rank back down to 20 k and fight up because it’ll “help them with the basics”. It’s not good for the community, and the burden of dealing with it is only going to grow as the server gets busier. It’s the other mods, rather than @anoek and @matburt who’ve pushed this, because we’re just tired of chasing around and fixing people’s ranks when they’re playing silly buggers.

Since @TheDidymen is so keen on precise figures, it’s more than once per day, but fewer than ten. I do agree though, that making people solve tsumego seems unfriendly. I’m hoping that if we take away the ability to change ranks whenever you feel the urge, the community can keep on spotting the sandbaggers and fake dans, as they already do, and we’ll muddle through together.



Thinking about deflation/inflation, I just realized doesn’t the current system actually promote rank deflation?
So… I’m not really good at theory crafting so correct me if I’m wrong, but fact is, every get stronger each day. The increase is small but is there. It’s really really hard to actually get worse playing. If I play with someone and have a 40-60% win/loss ratio, it’s logical to assume that I’m one stone weaker than him. But that doesn’t mean I’m 4k and he’s 3k.

Over time both of us will get better and better (as does everyone else) and he just keep on being 1 stone stronger than me, but we could be i.e. 1 dan and 2 dan by then. We could be several stones stronger after a year but if we keep playing normally on OGS we will still be 4k and 3k.

Is there a system that compensate for the fact that everyone get stronger over time?

ELO, which OGS ranks are based on, does this explicitly. There’s a slight upward drift in the maths, so that if two people of equal strength play each other over and over, each winning 50% of their games, they’ll rank up slowly.